Please help a confused student (US citizen) figure out how to study Mandarin in Taiwan.
So, this has a few elements.
First, I'm about to graduate school in June or so. I'm going to be going to Taiwan this September to study on a Taiwan Scholarship, for about NT$25,000/m ($US 730/m -ish). According to the terms of the scholarship, I have 1 year for a language study program (I've taken about one year of university-level Chinese*), and two for a Masters - say, an International MBA, or whatever strikes my fancy.
What I'm most concerned about is my first year. I decided that I want to study at a rather expensive university (National Taiwan University), in their ICLP
program. The tuition alone runs about $3500/quarter, which, needless to say, is insanely more expensive than any of the other language programs and won't be covered by my scholarship. BUT, it seems good (I want the most intensive coursework possible
), and given that NTU is a "good school", I would like to go.
I'm not averse to working my way through school. However, I'm totally confused on the legality of this. Does my scholarship preclude me from working? Could I, for example, get a job teaching/tutoring English to pay for my tuition? What sort of visa would I need? Is, for example Hess
a good move? I've done a bit of asking around, and googling, but I can't seem to get clear answers.
Additionally, since, you know, I've never been to Taiwan, I'd sort of like some advice. If anyone knows of any particularly great language schools where an industrious student could get as fluent as humanly possible, I'd love to hear about it. I've seen many of these schools' websites, but it's extremely difficult to judge a school's quality on their PR spin alone, yaoming?
Any other advice about postgrad student (dorms? food? etc?) life in Taipei particularly (or Taiwan in general) is great. Be a pal and assume that I'm adventurous and not concerned with living lavishly - just pursuing knowledge and culture.
Bonus points, shiny objects, and an e-hug go to anyone who has done something similar on the same scholarship and can offer advice.
*And, as an aside, though I am kinda bad at Mandarin, I have four plus years of Japanese under my belt. When I was studying Japanese, I found Heisig's Remembering the Kanji
to be extremely
helpful. Is there any book that uses a similar approach for Chinese?
Thanks in advance, green!